The 10 Weeks To Save The Games Industry campaign continues. Matchmade CEO Jiri Kupiainen and GamesForest.Club's Maria Wagner are sustainably travelling around Europe spreading the message to games makers and communities that we all need to get serious about what we can all do to help save the planet.
The message is a simple one. Unless we all get smarter about the necessity and logistics of our business travel, the global turnaround in CO2 production that we're all praying for simply isn't going to happen.
The duo are now seven weeks into their campaign and each week they'll be reporting into PG.biz and sharing a new video on their YouTube featuring comment from some of Europe's finest game makers. Here's the latest episode (with a video below). Be sure to subscribe to their YouTube channel here to keep up with their journey.
Jiri Kupiainen: From Budapest our trip continued to Bratislava and then onwards to Prague, where I’m writing this update. As always, I’ve been completely blown away by the hospitality of the Slovaks and the Czechs - people go to almost comical lengths to help, whether it’s doing our laundry or scheduling last minute interviews with the founders of the biggest gaming companies in the region. Germans and Finns definitely have a lot to learn when it comes to making people feel welcome.
Our arrival in Bratislava was however darkened by the tens of people with decidedly unfriendly faces carrying Slovak flags around the city. These people were “marching for peace in Ukraine”, which around these parts seems to be a euphemism for “just let Russia invade who they want.” People in the games industry we talked with universally condemned this train of thought, but it’s clear that Russia still has a lot of pull in Central European politics.
We interviewed Elena Lobova, co-founder & CBDO at GDBAY, and founder at Achievers Hub for a future episode, and as we spoke about how she had to flee from the Russians twice - first in 2014 from Luhansk, and then again in 2022 from Kyiv - it felt impossible to symphatize with these idiots marching “for peace”.
It would be naive to try to avoid getting political when Russia is waging a genocidal war just across the border. Given that we’re also interviewing Bohemia Interactive who make hardcore military simulators about wars fought with Soviet weaponry, I’m curious to see how the response will be to the episodes shot here when they go live a few weeks from now.
Meanwhile, the second part of the Lisbon episode - which we shot three weeks ago - went live today.
Looking at these sunny shots while it’s +1 and raining outside certainly makes me question our travel plans, but the trip continues northwards regardless.
One goal of this project was to mix interviews with gaming veterans with interviews from people working on sustainability in other fields, in order to see if there was something the games industry could learn from them. In the latest episode we have Brian from FRVR talking about all the damage the app distribution monocultures have caused, while Philippe from Climate Farmers talks about how we need to go back to old farming methods to restore nature, fight climate change and make food nutritious again.
It’s hard not to feel that these two things are somehow connected.